Oil pipeline accidents fell 10% in 2016, joint report says

The number of US crude oil and petroleum product pipeline accidents in 2016 fell 10% from the previous year’s level, the American Petroleum Institute and Association of Oil Pipe Lines jointly reported in their 2017-19 Pipeline Safety Excellence Strategic Plan and 2016 Performance Report on Apr. 24.

The number of US crude oil and petroleum product pipeline accidents in 2016 fell 10% from the previous year’s level, the American Petroleum Institute and Association of Oil Pipe Lines jointly reported in their 2017-19 Pipeline Safety Excellence Strategic Plan and 2016 Performance Report on Apr. 24.

The 3-year strategic plan inaugurated a longer planning horizon in response and a broader safety focus to encompass the full range of industry-wide improvement efforts, API Pipeline Director David Murk and AOPL Pres. Andrew J. Black said in their joint message. “Strategic planning and the establishment of long-term goals are critical to industry-wide pipeline safety improvements,” they noted.

“The 2017-19 strategic plan will drive our industry will drive our industry to achieve advances in pipeline safety technology, improve ways to engage with our key stakeholders and communicate with the public, strengthen emergency preparedness and response planning, and adopt holistic pipeline safety management practices,” they said.

They said that in the next 3 years, the US liquids pipeline industry will focus on promoting organizational excellence, improving safety through technology and innovation, enhance emergency response preparedness, and increase stakeholder awareness and involvement.

Pipeline operators, through performance measures and annual reviews of data associated with the four industry-wide goals, will assess industry performance and identify emerging trends to help operators focus their attention on areas where they will have the most impact on safety, they said.

“In 2017, industry will build these performance measures, build the framework to collect the data, and establish performance targets. Performance measures will be fully implemented in 2018,” they indicated.

Each year, an industry-wide strategic planning team will review the 3-year plan to keep its focus relevant and identify any emerging issues, the officials said. “With periodic updates as appropriate, the plan will remain a blueprint for its intended period, providing direction and means to track and measure performance,” they said.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

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